Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a religious education initiative that is rooted in the Word of God. It begins with the understanding that God has already established a relationship with each of God’s beloved, most especially with children. CGS provides an environment for the child to contemplate the great mysteries of our faith at their own pace. The St. Francis of Assisi Atrium is a quiet place for children to fall in love with the One who calls them by name. The Atrium has simple, yet beautiful materials designed to draw the children into prayer. You can learn more about CGS on their website by clicking here, or by reading our Level 1 brochure by clicking here.
We are very happy to be reopening our Atrium for in-person Catechesis of the Good Shepherd this Fall 2022. Level 1 (3-6 year-olds) will be offered on Tuesdays OR Wednesdays from 4:00 – 5:30pm. Click here for the registration form, please fill it out and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org or drop it through the mail slot in the parish office door.
Check out this article on Catechesis of the Good Shepherd: Children Are Embracing Hands-on Catechism
What is Level One?
Level one of the Catechesis is for those children ages 3 to 6. The primary purpose of level one is to assist the child in coming to a greater awareness of two essential spiritual questions: one, who is God/Jesus?; and two, who am I in relationship to God/Jesus? These questions are addressed by meditating upon the Word of God; familiarizing the child with biblical stories; exploring the parable of the Good Shepherd and the child’s covenant relationship with God; working with the child as they grow in their awareness of all the various dynamics of our faith and how we celebrate that faith, particularly the celebration of the Mass. By using the materials provided in the Atrium the child will begin to establish a greater awareness of Jesus as a real person. This awareness will help the child to unlock some of the great mysteries of our faith.
Level One will be offered Tuesdays OR Wednesdays from 4:00 – 5:30 pm.
What is Level Two?
Level two of the Catechesis is for those children ages 6 to 9. As children move into level 2 their questions centre more on the spiritual ‘what’ than ‘who’: What is God’s plan? What is my role in God’s plan? In response, we study God’s Plan of Salvation as shown to us in the Bible and the gifts that we have received from God through time. The children are developing their moral intelligence, so we listen and reflect together on the stories Jesus told of mercy and justice, as well as His suggestions such as “Do to others what you would have them do to you.” The children age 6-9 are trying to discover their role in God’s plan and their own place in the community of believers – the church – so they are given the tools to enable them to access the Word of God (Bible) and the prayers of the church in the rites of Eucharist, Baptism and Reconciliation.
Level Two is not being offered this fall.
To learn more about this way for our children to grow in God’s love, please check out these past bulletin inserts by clicking below.